Subscribe to It Has Nothing to Do with Age by Email Follow Tusk95664 on Twitter It Has Nothing to Do with Age: 2012
It Has Nothing To Do With Age provides self-help principles. The inspirational stories give concrete illustrations of overcoming many of life's challenges. Difficulties pertaining to depression, grief, divorce, and death are presented and worked through by the participants. Physical impairments, injuries, overcoming issues with weight, alcohol, and nicotine are also dealt with and resolved by the athletes.

This book provides a model on how to overcome some of the difficulties that confront all of us . Further, this read sheds a beacon of light on preventive measures for good physical and mental health. Research demonstrates that exercise is an important component in treating such ailments and debilitating illness such as depression, stroke, heart disease, brain or cognitive malfunction,and Alzheimer's disease.

I suggest that proper exercise can be used as a preventive measure for psychological, cognitive, and physical health as well. Follow my prescription and lead a better, more fulfilling, and healthier life.

Monday, December 31, 2012

New Year's Resolutions

"I make the most of all that comes and the least of all that goes."– Sara Teasdale

Tomorrow, Secretariat, Debbie, Randall, Diane and I are doing the Resolution Run in Auburn.  After that our intention is to go out to dinner and celebrate.  A Happy New Year to everybody.
 As New Year’s is approaching, how many of you have intentions to make a resolution or resolutions? As you know, by now, making a resolution is the easy part but following through is more difficult. It does not take much effort to make a resolution. Some common intentions have to do with losing weight, going on a diet or working out at the gym etc. Let’s start with the plan such as going on a diet. Some (but not all) danger points include the following: 1.The number of pounds to be lost (is arbitrary along with the time it would take to accomplish it is also arbitrary). 2. The number of previous unsuccessful attempts. 3. The amount of stress in your life.4.  One’s personality type which includes the amount of self discipline, stick to it ness, and compulsive behavior or qualities helps. 5. Proper goal setting which includes a clear definition and an implementation mechanism.6. The motivation of the participant is very important.
We all know that losing and keeping off the weight is very difficult to attain. Let’s begin with setting the goal. The goal must be realistic, clearly defined, easily measured and important. How one thinks about the goal must also be in concert with motivation. Realistically, a good way to begin losing weight is to research nutrition, evaluate cardio programs along with self-knowledge and awareness.
Let’s define our goal as to lose 4 or 6 pounds per month and start with one month only. This means we don’t have to get on the scale daily but maybe one to two times during the month. After every 30 or 31 days (you decide) you can then evaluate and measure the amount of pounds lost. If you have been successful you’re likely on the right track and can determine whether or not to proceed with your program.
To be continued.

Friday, December 28, 2012

Consequences Regarding a Culture of Fear

Part 3

"In things pertaining to enthusiasm, no man is sane who does not know how to be insane on proper occasions."– Henry Ward Beecher

How many posttraumatic stress disorder diagnoses exist as a result of Sandy, Katrina or some other natural disaster that seem to occur on regular basis?

For the rest of us that haven’t experienced Sandy, Sandy Hook or war, the American Institute of Stress identified common causes of stress(1) childhood trauma,(2) death of a loved one, (3)divorce, (4) finances, (5)job, (6)health, (7) personal relationships, (8) caregiver for critically ill child or spouse,(9) pregnancy, (10) danger.

Other comments about chronic stress and if present results in difficulties such as getting into deep sleep. In this condition, the body doesn’t receive its necessary restoration. And without restoration, this leads to chronic fatigue and an increased risk for health problems.

Does being married help? According to the Terman longevity project, the researchers found that married people do not necessarily live healthier and longer than unmarried people, but married men do; steadily married men are healthier and live longer than single, divorced and remarried, and, especially, divorced men; divorce is particularly stressful for men and only about a third of these men make it to old age; steadily married women live longer and healthier than women who are divorced and remarried, but we’re not much healthier or longer lived than single women or women who divorced and lived alone; being divorced was much less harmful to women’s health into a man’s.

How is memory affected? Prolonged exposure to chronic stress causes atrophy of the frontal and hippocampus areas of the brain resulting in a reduced ability to encode and consolidate new memories. However during acute stress (hormones like nor epinephrine and epinephrine arouse and excite the hippo campus and amygdala) and thus we create powerful memories of the stressful event so that we will remember these events and be able to either avoid or cope with them in the future.

What about obesity? There appears to be a connection between chronic stress and obesity. Research studies show that about two thirds of people eat more than usual when they are stressed. Cortisol is released during chronic stress and stimulates appetite so that the body can replace the energy being released in the flight, flight or freeze response. As cortisol sticks around for a while with its long half-life there’s a period of prolonged increased appetite after acute stress as well. On top of that there is a craving for very high calorie fatty or sweet foods like burgers, fries and sweet treats. Because of the increased caloric intake chronic stress causes, these excess calories are deposited in the abdominal or visceral fat cells around the middle. And increased belly fat heightens the cardiovascular and diabetic risk which is the direct result of chronic stress .Reference: Institute for Natural Resources.

The following are my prescriptions to counter stress in your life: 1. Recognize negative or irrational ideas that are repeated in your mind. 2. Stop, breathe, relax, and reflect before action. 3. Turn to family and/or good friends .4. Reduce or avoid negative people, situations or environments. 5. Become more like a vegan and eat fruits, vegetables and other nutritious foods. 6. Get the proper amount of rest and sleep .7. Immerse in an exercise program. 8. Give more than you receive. 9. Consult a psychotherapist. 10. Consider medication

My bottom line is to keep moving and run for your life because it’s good for you.


I am running well and Secretariat and I are tapering for our New Year’s run which is called the Resolution Run. Join us in Auburn at the Overlook. We are running the 10 mile event and plan to be joined by Randall and Diane. Debbie has also signed up as she has started running again after a long absence. Good luck Debbie.

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Consequences Regarding a Culture of Fear

Part 2

Mother and Child, Henry Moore
"I think in terms of the day's resolutions, not the year's."– Henry Moore

What about the constant bombardment of negative stimuli? We eventually become less efficient at coping (unbalanced chemically to deal) with these life events. Further, we become susceptible to diseases such as Alzheimer’s, heart disease, cancer, stroke, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, type II diabetes, accidents, pneumonia and flu. Also, the underlying fear, anxiety or emotional states become vulnerable and easily activated and overwhelmed which can result in mental disorders such as anxiety and depression. Thus the behavior is overcompensation for an unconscious or conscious underlying insecurity or vulnerability. For example, feeling powerless gets expressed in attempting to predict and rigidly control or over control people and things (environment). Or perhaps, buying more and more killing devices with lots of ammo; relocating to a gated –“protective” community; buying a large SUV or truck; purchasing a home alarm system; installing a large fence or gate (to keep out bad); getting pets (a large dog-a pit bull or shepherd); or moving to a state like Idaho with all its ex law enforcement types.

Do these behaviors remove or resolve underlying or unconscious fears? No, they mask them. Do these behaviors result in our feeling safe and allow us protect our children in nurturing or loving ways? No, we tend to over protect them creating dependent, mistrustful and less autonomous children? How many parents do you know that transport their kids “everywhere “or give them cell phones? Do these behaviors keep their children protected and allow the children and teens to develop a sense or belief that the parent trust’s them as well as a belief in a (safe or unsafe) world?

What’s going to happen to all those Newtown children? Likely many children at the Connecticut elementary school who witnessed the event quite possibly will have symptoms similar to a diagnosis of post traumatic stress disorder. At this point in time, there is a post traumatic stress disorder diagnosis in preschool children but not elementary school-age children. How many of these children will receive treatment? What is your long-term prediction about the mental health of these children? What kind of (trusting or non-trusting) parents are they likely to be and how will that affect their children?

What about our military that have been involved in two wars over the last 10 years and have had deployment in Afghanistan and Iraq? How many are likely to have symptoms of a post traumatic stress disorder diagnosis as a result of those wars and those consequences? To complicate matters for these veterans many of them also have a post concussion syndrome from traumatic brain injury as well.

To be continued.

Monday, December 24, 2012

Happy Holidays

Happy Holidays  and looking forward to 2013  from Frank & Secretariat.

Consequences Regarding a Culture of Fear

"Do not fear to be eccentric in opinion, for every opinion now accepted was once eccentric."– Bertrand Russell

Part 1:  Consequences Regarding a Culture of Fear
 Do you think collectively, as a nation, that we are feeling safe or unsafe? The NRA suggested that we better arm our teachers so they can outgun the bad guys.  Thinking back to elementary school days, I can’t think of too many of my teachers that I’d want packing a gun.  How many of your teachers do you want to have a 357 magnum at their side?  Incidentally, there was armed security at the Columbine school but they were easily out- gunned by the students .This country has 5% of the world’s population and 50% of the guns. It appears to me that we have enough guns in this country. It is also clear that we do not feel safe or secure.
Look at all of the tools and aids that we have to distort reality. We can go see an action movie, read a novel, purchase an electronic war game, and go on an athletic or arts event. These activities helps to mask an underlying insecurity but only for   a short period. If these activities don’t work, we have a number of other options. We can visit a doctor to get an opium based prescription medication , find illegal drugs, purchase alcohol, or even drink a lot of caffeine to distort our emotional state.
If you watch or listen to the news you are bombarded about doom and gloom i.e. our economy( fiscal cliff), our dysfunctional Congress, our politics of fear and “what if”,  local government  budget concerns, health  issues,  corporation and Wall Street  corruptions , war - embassy fatalities,  Middle East uprisings- riots,9-11  and don’t forget Newtown- Sandy Hook and other  man-made problems. I’m sure you can add to my list. On top of that there are natural disasters such as Katrina, Sandy, that add to our being in an “unsafe”, unpredictable, anxiety producing stressful world.
Prehistoric man had to confront enemies like wild animals, hunger, drought and the hot and cold temperature. Within his brain he had neurotransmitters that included serotonin, nor epinephrine, and dopamine. High levels of these chemicals are involved in emotions of fear and sadness which are the driving forces behind   stress and anxiety and depression. High levels of nor epinephrine are involved in producing fear (fight, flight or freeze) in the amygdala which is the stress response to threatening stimuli. So chemical imbalances occur within when we have to deal with threatening circumstances. In addition, the prefrontal, temporal cortex and the limbic system are involved in the production and maintenance of emotional states. And in the cortex we perceive what’s happening around us and then think about it in productive or irrational ways. Not only that but we know retain memories concerning the threatening stimulus or stressful event. These memories are aroused through the hippo campus and the amygdala. This process assigns an emotion to our thoughts. In other words, emotion produced comes from the interaction of all these parts of the brain (the hippo campus, amygdala, limbic system)   and are especially important for the negative emotional states that accompany stress, anxiety and depression.

To be continued.

Friday, December 21, 2012

Doping,Lying and Ford Motor

"Ruin and recovering are both from within."– Epictetus

"A person who has never made a mistake has never tried anything new."– Albert Einstein
Changing the subject for a moment, let’s talk about doping. Levi Leipheimer raced with Lance Armstrong between 2000 and 2011. He finished third in the Tour de France in 2007 and won a bronze medal in 2008 Beijing Olympics. He indicated that when he turned pro “I came to see cycling for what it was: a sport where some team managers and doctors coordinated and facilitated the use of banned substances and methods by their riders. A sport where the athletes at the highest level-perhaps without exception-used banned substances. A sport where doping was so accepted that riders from different teams- who were competitors on the road-coordinated their doping to keep up with other riders doing the same thing.” Source is the Wall Street Journal October 11, 2012
With a glimpse into the cycling culture, one can guess about and understand peer pressure.  If your teammates and competitors are doping, what should you do? When the top cyclists do it, what happens to your expectations about winning and competing? If Lance was doping, then how could you compete with him by not doping?  Would you make the team on ability alone? Could you get a sponsor on ability alone?
Lance, I understand why you did it. I wonder how good you’d be in cycling if everyone was clean. We’ll never know, will we?
The results of this study probably won’t surprise you but confirm what you already believe. A group of Chinese researchers asked young adults to answer questions about themselves and in some cases give false-untruthful answers. The researchers tracked reaction times as a measure of how difficult participants found it to lie. Guess what? Those young adults given practice about lying before a second round of testing were able to get their reaction times for deception down to the shortest or about the same as reaction times when telling the truth. In other words , if you want to become a better liar, practice. You heard the expression practice makes perfect. This apparently correct even when it comes to lying.  At what age do we start practicing lying either to ourselves or others?  Maybe this is where the expression “the truth hurts” comes from.
 Also found in the December 15-16, 2012 Wall Street journal was an article questioning Ford Motor Companies claim that certain hybrids were getting 47 miles per gallon. However, road tests by Consumer Reports magazine found that Ford’s claim was not accurate and in fact differed (less than stated) by 8 to 10 miles per gallon per model. Look for the spin by the Ford   regarding this controversy. Who said it’s not difficult to assess truth –not me?

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Chronic Stress ,Newtown,Conn.and Assault Weapons

"No man can think clearly when his fists are clenched."– George Jean Nathan
Did you know that a zebra is not likely to get an ulcer? We are the dominant species on this earth mainly because we can out think all other animals that inhabit earth. Unfortunately, when it comes to stress, thinking becomes our greatest liability. This means that we now have the ability to activate a stress response from just thinking about any threatening stressor. We can also think ourselves into a stress response even when no stressor is present. We can imagine all kinds of threatening stressors and anticipate the coming of a stressor   which causes stress. Day in day out of chronic stress resulting from our modern culture is becoming a major health threat and probably the biggest threat to our mental health physical health as well as life expectancy.
Did you know the worst job for chronic stress is being a caregiver? In one study, family caregivers of Alzheimer’s patients had more  impaired immune system’s ,increased level of infectious diseases, inflammation, depression,  high blood pressure, cardiovascular disease, arthritis, obesity, osteoporosis, type 2 diabetes, and muscle atrophy than controls. Parents of children with chronic threatening diseases such as cancer had more impaired immune systems and more infectious diseases than parents of healthy children. A study of caregiver’s spouses with Alzheimer’s disease doubled the risk of heart disease in males caregivers compared to controls. Another study found that being a caregiver for a spouse with Alzheimer’s disease increased dementia risk by six times with men being more vulnerable than women. Source is the Institute for Natural Resources.
Just think if you were a parent or student at the Newtown, Connecticut elementary school? Can you think of the more stressful situation? How much trauma is now associated with this elementary school? How safe would you feel if you were a parent, teacher or young child? It’s going to take a lot of prayer, spiritual guidance, and therapy to make things better. And it’s not clear of the damaging effects and later consequences of future behavior for all who were affected by this tragedy.
Did you notice the number of females killed? The young male killer shot his mother and too many young girls last Friday. The newly installed security system at the school failed too many. It is clear, that too many mentally disturbed and unhealthy males have easy access to automatic assault weapons. The term assault weapon is clear because that’s exactly what they are. They are not for target shooting or personal protection they are for assault. the American College dictionary defines assault “ as an attack; the stage of close combat; unlawful physical attack upon another; an attempt to offer to do violence to another; by holding a stone or club it in a threatening manner.” and why do you want an assault weapon? You were going to do what with an assault weapon? You feel safe with a loaded assault weapon in your hand? You don’t feel safe if you don’t have an assault weapon? If you have an assault weapon, join the military and assault the bad guys. But first, get a psychological evaluation.

Monday, December 17, 2012

Chronic Stress Response,Newtown,Conn.Tom Christofk and Conrad Dobler

Self-reverence, self-knowledge, self-control. These three alone lead to sovereign power."– Alfred Tennyson
Did you know that your cortex-prefrontal cortex (which is the most complex object in the universe) plays a strong role in the regulation of thinking processes and complex reasoning, control over decision-making, communication and expression of emotions and personality, inhibition of impulse, regulation of attention and expression of social behavior shuts down and is affected   by stress, anxiety and the depression?  Did you know that most chronic stress in modern industrial and information age society is psychological stress caused by thinking about threats, not actual physical threats themselves? Further, chronic stress negatively affects brain function causing atrophy in the frontal lobes and hippo campus. Chronic stress is a major cause of anxiety disorders and excessive anger as well as depression.
In other words if your stress response is repeatedly turned on, your brain and body will be damaged. Second, if you can’t turn off the stress response for prolonged periods of time, your brain and body will be damaged. Third, stress increases the risk of disease and weakens the body’s immune defenses in the setting of pre-existing disease. It is believed that chronic stress may be the biggest killer of Americans because it is a risk factor for the top seven causes of death that kills three of every four Americans: heart disease, cancer, stroke, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, type II diabetes, accidents, pneumonia and flu.
Over 12,000 years ago in the Stone Age, our human stress response was designed to protect us from immediate physical threats that existed while we were the nomadic hunter-gatherer. This stress response helped us challenge or escape a lion attack where life or death was the outcome. Body systems that helped us survive were activated such as fast heart rate and systems that were necessary for immediate survival were shut down like digestion and sex. Our stress response hasn’t changed since the Stone Age. Civilization, industrialization and culture have changed. We are now exposed to threats never encountered in the Stone Age. Not only that  but our stress response is an anachronism  and was not designed to efficiently cope with the  constant bombardment of chronic stressors such as childhood trauma, death of a loved one, divorce, finances, job, health, personal relationships, caregiver for critically ill child or spouse, pregnancy  and danger. The result is our acute stress response (designed to activate occasionally and help us survive) has now become a chronic stress response and a threat to our mental and physical health.
Lately, we’ve had more than our share of murder- suicide, the most recent in Connecticut. Of course, much of the conversation focuses on guns and legislation regarding gun control. It seems to me that were missing the boat. Major problems in this country include poor physical and mental health and contribute to the tragedy. More than likely we are a nation of chronic stress.
Tom's 17th annual birthday run
 Our Congress has created “the fiscal cliff” and our daily news (TV, radio, newspaper- periodicals) bombards us with local, national and world problems. Further, pay attention to conversations by your friends or family. If they are talking about physical illness, financial worries or other unpleasant topics, this may be contributing to your stress. For me, one way to get respite is to do a trail run. Yesterday was a good example as I participated in the 17th annual Tom Christofk’s birthday run. The group (Tevis, runners, ride & tiers) met at the Olmsted. The weather was terrific as well as the friends. Linda and I hosted a pot luck brunch afterwards.  It is clear to me that a trail run with younger people works to reduce stress in my life. How about you, what’s your secret? Reference: the Institute for Natural Resources.
I just received a signed book”The NFL’s Dirtiest Player Comes Clean -Pride and Perseverance from Conrad Dobler (with forward by Dan Dierdorf NFL announcer and teammate) in part he wrote “keep moving.” While I was in Kansas City this past September doing book signings, Ed Budde, Conrad and I talked about Ed’s reference to keep moving. Conrad’s cognitive functioning is still good as he remembered our conversation.

Friday, December 14, 2012

Birthdays and the Human Advantage

"The important work of moving the world forward does not wait to be done by perfect men."– George Eliot
Just how tough are we? And why are we hombres tough? Some  factors contributing to our ability  to be  tough and the  opportunity to be  successful  include the following: 1  Our archaic brain and its   ability to regulate hunger, thirst, sleep/wake cycle, temperature, and  the fight , flight or freeze  responses, defending territory, keeping safe etc.  2.  Our old brain-the limbic system and its functions like mood, memory, hormone production control: the amygdala, which is primarily responsible for fear, fight or flight responses and anger 3.  The new brain-the prefrontal cortex (PFC) and its higher cognition, abstract thought, use of tools, comprehension of language and social behavior functions 4.  All our neurons and numerous neurotransmitters etc.  5    Our hormones such as the hGH and its functions related to developing thicker skin, stronger bones, and increasing muscle mass , tissue regeneration-healing of wounds,   higher energy levels etc.

Run Faster
Faster than Usain Bolt: At 30 mph, hippos have a more impressive top speed than the fastest man in the world. Bolt can only reach 29mph

 And do not forget our ability to travel-run or walk long distances with limited amounts of food and water.  We have approximately 3 million functional sweat glands, to thermo regulate efficiently and outlast and run faster than our competition.   We also have main water conserving hormone- arginine vasopressin (AVP) or anti—diuretic hormone which is a big advantage for us .  Per Institute for Natural Resources.With all these advantages, it is not fair to compare   some of us to the horse with its small brain and limitations. In other words, take advantage of our human evolution to be all that you can.

From  Secretariat: So Frank thinks we are faster then our competition. We are not even close to the top ten.
Many people consider the greyhound to be the second fastest animal. They can reach average race speeds in excess of 18 metres per second (59 feet per second) or 63 kilometers per hour (39 mph), which would place then just outside this top 10. However, at maximum acceleration, a greyhound reaches a full speed of 70 km per hour (43 mph) within the first 30 metres, traveling at almost 20 metres per second for the first 250 metres of a race. The only other animal that can accelerate faster over a short distance is the cheetah, which has been measured to reach speeds of nearly 100 kilometers per hour over 3-4 strides from a standing start.

Animal speed
1. Cheetah 61 98 On June 20, 2012, 11 year old Sarah the cheetah shattered the world record for the standing 100-meter dash, clocking a time of 5.95 seconds. That is an average of 38 miles per hour (61 km/hr). During the run it was radar-timed at a peak speed of 61 miles (98 kilometers) an hour. See a video.
2. Pronghorn antelope 60 97
3. Lion 50 80
4. Thomson's gazelle 50 80
5. Wildebeest 50 80
6. Springbok 50 80
7. Quarter horse 47.5 76
8. Cape hunting dog 45 72
9. Elk 45 72
10. Coyote 43 69

Tom Christofk

Tom Christofk
On another note, this Sunday we are having a birthday run in Cool. Meet us at the fire station at 9:00 am. After the run, Linda and I are hosting a potluck brunch. Incidentally, this birthday run has been going on for over 15 years which means that Tom Christofk has now caught up and is as young as Secretariat.
I met Tom and Laura roughly 15 years ago during ride and tie competitions. At that time I began running in order to participate in these events. Then I learned that Tom, Secretariat and other competitors were involved in running ultras and endurance riding including the Tevis Cup. So they were my models. I admit that ride and tie is my favorite sport.  I want to thank Tom and Secretariat for their assistance and blame them for what I’m doing today. It’s their fault- especially Secretariats.
Keep moving and run as your life depends on it.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Run by Running and "Bo Knows"

"You learn to speak by speaking, to study by studying, to run by running, to work by working; in just the same way, you learn to love by loving."– St. Francis de Sales
The following are a few more stretching aides about keeping active and lessening potential injuries: 1. We know that sore heals and arches can sometimes result in plantar fasciitis which is an inflammation of the connective tissue of the foot (take a golf ball and roll your barefoot over it). 2. We know that stretching is important especially after workouts when your muscles are not cold. Before I start stretching my Achilles, I employ my cylinder and roll my calves for about three minutes .3. If you’re experiencing some discomfort it’s important to back off from your training. You don’t want to damage specialized stem cells or muscle tears to turn into major injuries. 4. Consuming proteins within a half an hour after exercise is important. Chocolate milk helps to rebuild your muscles. Secretariat just had a second bottle of coconut water after his run. 5. Strength training increases muscle mass. Lifting a laundry basket overhead, using free weights or machines are other ways (I go to PT for Achilles treatment and use both. 6. Consider taking time off by skipping a day of training. Periodically Secretariat and I hit the trail and walk some or the majority of the loop.
Just yesterday I talked with Randall about our upcoming Way too Cool 50 K. race in March. His work schedule is interfering with this training. I suggested that he enter the Jed Smith 50 K. in February as the trail is gentler than the Way too Cool race. I also suggested that he consider focusing on ground time (some walking) versus running miles. By focusing on ground time he is cross training, less likely to hurt himself, and psychologically will reduce his worry about completing the 50 K. in March. He told me he was excited about being selected for that race and then began to worry.  I want to reduce his worry.  Hopefully, implementing walking increasing ground time should help him.
Thank you Secretariat for your pertinent comments on Monday’s post Re: horse and human toughness. I agree that both horse and humans are tough and I want to comment a bit more about human toughness.   Although, I ran over 90 miles during training, I know of runners that have totaled between 100 to 200 miles per week.  I also just heard that Bo Jackson during the NFL combine ran a 4.12  forty yard dash. You might remember that Bo Jackson played professional baseball and football.   You might also remember hearing the famous Nike commercial “Bo Knows” in the 1990s.
For all of you thinking about getting off the couch “just do it” as the Nike commercial goes. Remember keep moving and run for your life.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Can horses handle the heat better than humans? The research says…

 Everything we hear is an opinion, not a fact. Everything we see is a perspective, not the truth.
Marcus Aurelius

Can horses handle the heat better than humans? The research says…

A human’s normal body temperature is 98.6.

If you are a very fit person with low blood pressure, you may actually have a resting body temperature closer to 96, so there is a small range of differences in humans. The same is true of horses.

Normal body temperature for a horse is between 98 and 101. Horse temperature is normally taken rectally. When human temperature rises over 99 degrees and horse temperature rises over 102, it’s wise to take precautions. When your body becomes overheated you are in danger of hyperthermia (over heated). Hypothermia is when your body becomes too cool and can’t warm up. Both can lead to death if untreated.

So, who handles the heat better, horses or humans?

Well, a lot of that depends on external factors like humidity, wind speed, air temperature and whether there is shade and water available.

Both horses and humans cool themselves by sweating, which sets them apart from dogs, cats and birds which cool themselves through panting or respiration alone.

When horses and humans start to pant, it’s not a good sign. It basically means that they are no longer able to cool themselves by sweating.

When the combined air temperature and humidity levels exceed human body temperature (about 99 degrees) it becomes harder for humans to cool themselves by sweating. Sweat has to evaporate from the body in order to have a cooling effect. If the sweat sits on your skin, it actually traps heat in making you feel hotter, which is why some people say the heat in Savannah and other southeast coastal regions is worse than the heat in a place like Arizona or Utah, though once air temperatures rise above 90, most people agree, it’s HOT no matter what the humidity level!

Since a horse has a slightly higher body temperature than humans, they can handle slightly hotter air temperatures. A horse can still cool itself when the heat index is under 100, but once it rises to 101, they are on the same playing field as humans, so technically a horse can handle slightly higher temperatures, by 3 degrees tops, than humans.

This is about where the advantage ends though.

Both horses and humans who are acclimatized to the heat: i.e. have worked in the heat regularly for at least 14 days, will be better able to cope than someone who has not.

Also, the better physical condition you are in, the stronger your heart, lungs and muscles, the better able you can handle the heat.

Older humans and horses are often more at risk because they have slower metabolisms and may be less able to regulate internal temperatures and adapt to adverse environmental changes. They may also be on medications that can affect the body’s ability to adapt to heat stressors.

Older humans would be considered around 50 and up, and older horses about 10 and up, though again fitness and genetics can negate some of the effects of aging.

Humans actually have an advantage over horses when it comes to body size and the ratio of blood vessels located near the surface of the body.

When people get hot, they tend to flush red. This is because we have a huge web of tiny blood vessels leading to our skin. When we are hot, the blood is pushed outward to the skin where cool breezes, loose fitting clothes, sweating or cool compresses can help dissipate and wick away the heat from our bodies.

Horses have thicker skin, more ‘hair’, less skin surface to muscle mass and are less efficient at losing heat through the skin surface, which works out well in winter time, but puts them at a disadvantage in the summer.

Most horses will cool themselves naturally by laying down on cool damp soil or standing in the shade or near the water, something they can’t really do when they are being worked by humans.

So, as it stands, horses can handle the heat a little better than humans, but once they heat up, humans actually have the advantage and can cool down faster through natural means.

Let’s look further by comparing how much water each needs to replace the fluid lost.

Many people, especially when dealing with carriage horses being worked in the heat, will say that a carriage horse is not really working because he/she is just walking and to be honest, most of the research on humans and horses and heat stress has been done on working athletes, but veterinarians and human doctors estimate that a human will sweat out an estimated one liter of fluid per hour while moving normally in high heat and humidity compared to horse that will sweat out about 5 liters.

Heavy endurance athletes (humans) can sweat as much as 3 to 5 liters and heavy endurance horses can sweat out as much as 10 – 15 liters.

A liter is equal to about 34 ounces. A gallon is equal to about 3.8 liters.

So on average, a horse sweats five times more than a human doing the same amount of work. This also means that the average working horse is losing over a gallon of sweat per hour and horses can continue to sweat even if they are just standing in a hot area.

This brings up the question; is it better to sweat more or sweat less when it is hot out?

Sweating helps cool us off, but it also dehydrates us.

If you have ever gone for a long run or bike in the high heat and humidity, you probably licked the sweat dripping off your face and were surprised at how salty it tasted.

We don’t just sweat out water, we sweat out waters and minerals, often referred to as electrolytes, which are responsible for the transfer of electrical impulses across nerve endings.

If your electrolytes are not balanced (chloride, sodium, magnesium, calcium and potassium, primarily), you will have less efficient energy transfer and may begin to shake or feel weak and experience muscle fatigue and even rapid heart or irregular heart rates. The same is true for your horse.

Just drinking water may not be enough to replace the lost minerals and this is a more crucial process for the horse, which sweats out more fluids and salts.

If you have ever taken the saddle off a hot sweaty horse and not washed them off or cooled them properly, you can even see patches of salt where the sweat has dried.

Horses also have a greater urine volume than humans and can easily excrete 3 to 4 gallons a day, adding to the loss of fluids and electrolytes.

Research done on horses competing in the Olympics and Endurance races showed that horses may not show the effects of fluid and mineral loss until after they have rested and that if not corrected and the horse not given time to recuperate before being asked to work again, the horse will experience fatigue faster and show greater signs of heat stress with a LOWER rectal temperature than normal.

Considering most carriage tour owners use the rectal temperature of a horse as their guide to whether the horse is nearing heat stress or not, this could be problematic.

In a report entitled Acidosis and Skeletal Muscle Fatigue in horses, by Kennth William Hinchclif, Andris J. Kaneps, and Raymond J George in the journal Equine Exercise Physiology: the science of exercise in the athletic horse, the scientists discovered that dehydration increased stress on the cardio-vascular systems of horses and decreased the horse’s ability to regulate their own internal temperatures.

They state that, “Dehydration decreases exercise heat tolerance such that fatigue occurs at a lower core temperature when compared to exercise undertaken in the euhydratred state.”

Euhydrated, simply means, well hydrated.

Further research showed that older horses tended to overheat when dehydrated in half the time as younger horses.

So, bottom line: fit acclimatized horses can handle slightly higher temperatures than their human contemporaries, but humans are more efficient at cooling themselves through natural means (sweating and capillary cooling).

Horses sweat more than humans and can lose more electrolytes. Even if the sweat is evaporated, horses can lose vital fluids and minerals. They may be able to replace the minerals without getting enough water, or replace the water without getting enough minerals.

Lack of fluids can lead to heart stress and muscle fatigue as well as muscle cramping and colic. Lack of electrolytes can also have a negative impact on the heart and on energy transfer in the body causing fatigue and stress on all body systems.

In short, the answer to the question, “who handles the heat better?”, might be better phrased, how does either manage so that they are not negatively impacted by the heat.

The best way not to be negatively impacted is to stay cool and hydrated. For horses this means standing or light work in the shade, regular water intake, mineral replacement being made available throughout the day (salt licks and free choice mineral blocks and electrolytes in the feed or an added water bucket with electrolytes mixed in), hosing off with cool water and scraping away excess water to encourage evaporation and taking plenty of breaks from work to allow the muscles to recuperate and heart rates to return to normal.

You can test a horse’s hydration rate by pinching the neck skin and seeing how long it takes to return to normal. If it stays in a tent shape for longer than two seconds, that is generally considered a sign of dehydration.

Capillary refill time is also an indicator of how well a horse is coping with the heat. If you press your thumb into the gum of the horse’s mouth and the area stays white for longer than 2 seconds, it could indicate the horse’s blood flow is suppressed (shock) and the heart is not pumping properly. Normal gum color is pale pink for horses.

If it is too hot for you, chances are it is too hot for your horse. Don’t force your horse to work hard during the hottest part of the day. Be kind and considerate and give your four legged friend a break and don’t expect him or her to be a superhero and gallop 20 miles across the desert without stopping like the fictional movie horses. It may look cool on screen, but in reality it can be a real killer.

Monday, December 10, 2012

Tough Hombres

"The difference between a successful person and others is not a lack of strength, not a lack of knowledge, but rather in a lack of will."– Vincent Lombard
I agree with Secretariat and Penny that the vulnerable horse has to be protected however, I would like to point out that the one hour hold for the horse was established by the veterinarians on the Tevis. Not only that, but this arbitrary number was not based on equine research then or now. It was based on their judgment but not necessarily their experience in competing in that particular event.
The sport I like the most is Ride & Tie. In this sport, there is a veterinary check but no arbitrary hold of any length of time. There’s a starting time and a finishing time. The fastest team wins. It was during these events, that I learned more about world-class runners. On a very hot and humid day, the 2 human partners do so much better than the horse. Take for example one ride and tie world championship, in Southern California mountains when I teamed up with Diana, a young Western states Runner on Gypsy. Even though there were a number of teams that had  faster runners than our team, we came in the top 10 as a result of those teams receiving a  DNF  because of either lameness or respiration problems with their horses. Another example was the Cool Ride & Tie when I teamed up with a young outstanding college runner. Joshua brought Gypsy into the vet check and left her for me to get her evaluated. That day was also very hot and it took my horse at least 10 minutes before I could bring her to the vet since her pulse and respiration were elevated. While I was waiting at the vet check, Joshua’s out there running the trail. I might add that we did win that race. I bet the Secretariat would bring up two humans versus one horse. He knows that the longer the distance, the hotter the temperature, the worse it is for that vulnerable horse. Also, when Jonathan and I won the 100 mile Swanton Ride & Tie, I took take care my horse without having to undergo one hour holds compared with the endurance riders.  She finished   and our team one. She was tough too.

From Secretariat: I am glad to see Frank saying his horse is also tough. And that the horse realy does't need the hour holds to finish the distance. Thanks Frank for finely admitting that the horse was just as tough as you.
We humans have evolved into tough hombres. Maintain your toughness by keep moving as your life just might depend on it. If you don’t believe me just ask Secretariat.  Yesterday a group of us (Chris, Randall, Diane, Secretariat and I ran a 14 mile loop at the Cronan Ranch. Secretariat and I are planning a trail run today. Tonight I’m hosting MNF with Chris, Secretariat, Lon and Perry.

Friday, December 7, 2012

Sleep,Caffeine,Audio Books And Running

“Science…. It’s only sacred truth is that there are no sacred truths…” -Carl Sagan 
In reply to Secretariat, he wants to use the criteria for the equine (endurance races) and use it to compare with human (running events) criteria. When he talks about” riding time”he uses the rules established for the poor under evolved horse. Unfortunately, the evolution of the horse has reached a plateau as it has to stop to eat, pee and hydrate.  So the veterinarian’s, the protectors of the horse, came up with this artificial one hour hold time to allow the horse to eat, poop, pee,  drink and rest. Should superior, in evolution, man be subjected to veterinarian criteria for his competitions?  It doesn’t make sense to equate riding time as the only correct criterion since both man and beast is on the trail from the start to the( Tevis ) to finish. Not only that, the horse is then evaluated after the event to see if it still sound. The vet tells the rider to come back in an hour or so in order to evaluate the steed. These rules and criteria are simply man-made and subjected to personal opinion. Let’s be objective and scientific and have a start time and a finishing time and be done with it as far as comparing the superior and tough human with the four-legged beast. Forget riding time. Your opinions are welcomed.

Man is inclined to exaggerate almost everything - except his own mistakes. 

From Secretariat:  Like I said Frank if you don't like using ride time go ahead and add the two hour  hold time to Witezrif the horse still wins. As to having to stop to poop and pee the humans are the only ones I know that need to do that. Yes the horses do have to pass Vet cks so what. If the runners had to pass the same test less then half would finish. And lets see you pass a fit to continue test at the end of the run. Only the first few runners in would the rest would all be pulled. If fact most runners look so bad at the end we call them the walking dead. Oh one more thing Frank has forgotten to mention that it takes most of those superior humans more then 24 hrs to complete. Ask Frank how long it took him!!
We know that the ability to sleep particularly deep sleep or slow wave sleep is important for your health. We also know that individuals use alcohol, tranquilizers and sleeping pills to medicate and to assist in falling asleep. However, these so-called aids can be habit-forming, they can knock you out and more importantly they can reduce the total time spent in deep sleep thereby complicating   and not solving the issue of sleep disturbance.
However there is good news. For example the following sleeping pills have minimal impact on the sleep stages: Sonata, Ambien and Lunesta. Further, the following meds are non-habit forming and may help with sleep:  Trazodone, Remeron, Tricyclics, Benadryl, Seroquel, and Melatonin. Also, don’t forget to avoid proteins late in the evening; avoid stimulation (sex is good) late in the evening, and eliminate exercise three hours before bedtime. Another technique to consider is meditation or mindfulness-based stress reduction which focuses on the body, breathing and one’s feelings and thoughts. We know that employing mindfulness changes physiology and brain chemistry. Are you living a balanced life?
A few statistics about caffeine beverages and caffeine amounts per beverage:  1 .Coffee (6 ounces) 125 mg.  2. Decaf coffee (6 ounces) 5 mg .3.Espresso (1 ounce) 50 mg. 4. Tea (6 ounces) 50 mg .5.Green tea (6 ounces) 20 mg.6. Hot cocoa (6 ounces) 15 mg. 7. Energy drinks (12 ounces) about 200 mg.8. Caffeinated soft drinks (12 ounces) 40 to 60 mg. 9. Chocolate candy bar 20 mg. This source is from the Institute for Brain Potential.
Now you have some idea of the amount of caffeine in the above beverages. Consider totaling up the amount of caffeine you’re consuming within a day. If you are ingesting caffeine after 12 noon during the day and having difficulty with your sleep, part of the problem may be related to caffeine consumption.
Remember, sleep disturbances are a big issue in this country and if you can’t   resolve it on your own, make sure you make an appointment with a health care professional.
For some runners, the use of audio books has grown by 13% last year and downloads to mobile devices were up 30% accounting for 54% of  sales per survey by the Audio Publishers Association which is an industry trade group. US marathoner Ryan Hall read these books while running at a 6:45 minute pace (not on a treadmill) and burned calories   based on the number of miles. For example  reading Anna Karenina for 430.7 miles  he  burned 43,068 calories; reading 50  Shades  of Gray for 249.4 miles  he burned 24,944  calories; reading the Da Vinci Code for 214.7 miles he burned 21,471 calories; reading The Hunger Games for 142.1 miles  he burned 14,209 calories; and  reading The Great Gatsby for 60 miles he burned 5,999 calories. Article found in the Wall Street Journal November 27, 2012.
If using a audio book helps get you off the couch go burn some calories. Remember keep moving and run for your life.

Comment From Penny Fink
Secretariat's sister

Penny is sitting on the fence on this issue.
Yea I have been having a good time reading the two of you arguing. 
For me it's hard to say humans and horses have done many miraculous things when you consider the wars and how hard they worked but so did man working the fields and mines.  Both species have such determination.
From my point of view I personally watched my horse Madison give me everything he had at all cost to himself.  He would make me so mad that he wouldn't let me know he was hurting and then fall over after a session.  I always said he was the best example of any human I have ever known.  He loved life so much that he fought through his pain to live it as mom did until he could take no more and it stopped being fun. 
He will forever be my example of strength and courage.
But I have seen man so the same thing.  Look at the challenges athletes go through and how they fight on and the cancer victims and how some of them fight on without complaint.
So for me strength is not just about how many miles but about what's inside as well.
I do disagree about the fact that you are not competing fairly by getting off your horses back. To me this is what's inside and you are making a choice to help your horse stay healthy and sound by keeping yourself in equally good shape.
This to me is how it should be both human and animal should both be in shape so the horse doesn't have to take the whole load. This is to be expected of an athlete and I hate to see out of shape people on the horse’s backs.  They are kind and endure but it breaks them down and is not fair.  That to me is selfish.
So there you have it.
I am sitting on the beach with the sun finally out, as my bike needed a rest before I head back home haha.
Bet you wish you were on the ocean now.
Posted by Penny Fink

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Risks From Ibuprofen Use

For Athletes, Risks From Ibuprofen Use
Gretchen Reynolds on the science of fitness.

Many active people use the painkiller ibuprofen on an almost daily basis. In surveys, up to 70 percent of distance runners and other endurance athletes report that they down the pills before every workout or competition, viewing the drug as a preemptive strike against muscle soreness.

But a valuable new study joins growing evidence that ibuprofen and similar anti-inflammatory painkillers taken before a workout don’t offer any benefit and may be causing disagreeable physical damage instead, particularly to the intestines.

Studies have already shown that strenuous exercise alone commonly results in a small amount of intestinal trauma. A representative experiment published last year found that cyclists who rode hard for an hour immediately developed elevated blood levels of a marker that indicates slight gastrointestinal leakage.

Physiologically, it makes sense that exercise would affect the intestines as it does, since, during prolonged exertion, digestion becomes a luxury, said Dr. Kim van Wijck, currently a surgical resident at Orbis Medical Center in the Netherlands, who led the small study. So the blood that normally would flow to the small intestine is instead diverted to laboring muscles. Starved of blood, some of the cells lining the intestines are traumatized and start to leak.

Thankfully, the damage seems to be short-lived, Dr. van Wijck said. Her research has shown that within an hour after a cyclist finished riding, the stressed intestines returned to normal.

But the most common side-effect of ibuprofen is gastrointestinal damage. And since many athletes take the drug for pain before and after a workout, Dr. van Wijck set out to determine the combined effect of exercise and ibuprofen.

For the new study, published in the December issue of Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise, researchers at Maastricht University in the Netherlands recruited nine healthy, active men and had them visit the university’s human performance lab four times.

During two of the visits, the men rested languorously for an hour, although before one of the visits, they swallowed 400 milligrams of ibuprofen the night before and also the morning of their trip to the lab. (Four hundred milligrams is the recommended non-prescription dosage for adults using the drug to treat headaches or other minor pain.)

During the remaining visits, the men briskly rode stationary bicycles for that same hour. Before one of those rides, though, they again took 400 milligrams of ibuprofen the night before and the morning of their workout.

At the end of each rest or ride, researchers drew blood to check whether the men’s small intestines were leaking. Dr. van Wijck found that blood levels of a protein indicating intestinal leakage were, in fact, much higher when the men combined bike riding with ibuprofen than during the other experimental conditions when they rode or took ibuprofen alone. Notably, the protein levels remained elevated several hours after exercise and ibuprofen.

The health implications of this finding are not yet clear, although they are worrying, Dr. van Wijck said. It may be that if someone uses ibuprofen before every exercise session for a year or more, she said, “intestinal integrity might be compromised.” In that case, small amounts of bacteria and digestive enzymes could leak regularly into the bloodstream.

More immediately, if less graphically, the absorption of nutrients could be compromised, especially after exercise, Dr. van Wijck said, which could affect the ability of tired muscles to resupply themselves with fuel and regenerate.

The research looks specifically at prophylactic use of ibuprofen and does not address the risks and benefits of ibuprofen after an injury occurs. Short-term use of Ibuprofen for injury is generally considered appropriate.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Use Your Brain And Stretch

"I just kept on doing what everyone starts out doing. The real question is, why did other people stop?"– William Stafford

Per Secretariat’s recent post: I agree with Secretariat that Donna Fitzgerald’s horse had a fantastic run in the 70s on the Tevis Cup. Let’s forget that the trail course has changed over the years and the mileage may be different than it is today. Remember,  Secretariat posted “riding time” not the entire race time that both Donna  and her horse  were on the trail  from start to finish ( in other words, the  horse gets to be  massaged, blanketed, talk ed to, given its favorite  goodies-carrots , oats LMF etc., pampered , electrolytes, water, sponged down, saddle removed  and the rider gets to eat and rest  while the crew takes over) . In fact, on my Tevis ride at Forest Hill, I basically handed my reins to Secretariat and I did the same thing at the finish. It’s also true, that on my Western States run, Secretariat and Debbie met me at Robie Point and accompanied me to finish. Thinking back, my horse Raider got more attention and hampering from them than   I got.

From Secretariat: We don't have forget that the trail has changed it was tougher when Donna did it!!
If you want to add two hrs to her time you can the horse was still faster. Now your complaining we didn't take good enough care of you on the run.
Today’s second point is the following: in training for endurance and ride and tie, I rode Running Bear, Raider and Gypsy about 50 miles a week (rides of 16, 9 and 25 miles) .Starting at the end of 2001 I have run 50 to 60 miles per week till now except during this past September, October and the first part of November when I was rehabbing my Achilles. This past week I’m back on track and totaled 50 miles for the last two weeks. Sadly, none of my 3 horses are competing or totaling 50 miles per week. Further, Secretariat did quite well (10 Tevis buckles) on his super horses. Guess what? He is still competing while they are simply pooping and eating. The fact - both of us are still out there running on the trail and entering events while our horses are not says something about human toughness.  Do you agree?  In any event, make sure you watch for Secretariat’s counter point.  Some secrets about human toughness follow.
 Even though our bodies make changes we age, it means that we need to get smarter about exercising. Certainly tendons, muscles, joints and reaction times change and we don’t bounce back from injury as quickly.  However, following are ideas to help avoid getting injured during exercise. Don’t forget that exercise can help prevent Alzheimer’s, protect against stroke, increase  life expectancy, and even change your DNA so your  muscles work more  efficiently.
Consider the following ideas: 1. Ease into exercise-make sure you warm up your muscles to raise their temperature before you stress them. Before my runs, I walk ½ to 1 mile and so does Secretariat. 2. Target your middle as muscles in your core as this is the fulcrum around which all other muscles in your body pivot. Consider doing a plank for 30 seconds, rest, and repeat. When I was doing this exercise, I was getting close to holding this position for five minutes. 3. The squat  is the best single exercise to prevent injury and maintain leg and lower back strength-squat until your thighs are  parallel to the ground and rise slowly and repeat up to 20 times. 4. Increase your balance by standing on one leg a few times a day holding for 20 seconds and then switch legs. Also .stand on something to make your feet surface is uneven and even do the exercise with your eyes closed. 5. Stretch your Achilles by leaning against a wall with one  leg extended behind you on the ground and hold for 30 seconds. Slightly bend your knee in the extended leg and hold for another 30 seconds and then switch legs. During my Achilles rehab I  perform these exercise three times a day and even stop during my runs to stretch and  again especially after my trail runs ( I stretch even if it does slower my running times because   it has helped me deal with the discomfort) . 6. Strengthen your shoulders by grasping both ends of an elastic tube and pulling the tubing apart. This exercise can be repeated five times.
 I will post additional stretching ideas later in the week.  In the meantime remember to keep moving and run for your life.

Monday, December 3, 2012

Caffeine,Rock ,The Dominicans And Running

Seven Actions for a Whole Life- Stimulation of the intellect, Appreciation for nature, Physical exercise, play... Recreation, Employment, Charity, Prayer-Dominicans
I have been comparing horse and man on the Tevis Cup   ride to the Western States 100. As you know the Western States he evolved from the Tevis in the 1970s. The two events are quite similar in that they have common vet checks and/or aid stations and use the same trail. These characteristics allow for a good comparison in that they have many similar variables. It is  clear that Rio was a wonderful horse. How many Tevis victories ,completions  and top tens  did this equine have Secretariat? How does this horse compare to Scott Jurek and Tim Twietmeyers accomplishments Secretariat? 

“Horse sense is the thing a horse has which keeps it from betting on people. ”
W.C. Fields

From Secretariat: OK hear we go again yes Tim was a great runner but none of his winning times come close to the horses. As for Scott Jurek winning 7 times is amazing but still none of his winning time come close to Witezirf who won 6 times I’ve listed the times below/ Yes he he has one more win then the horse but big deal none of his times are even close. 

Human                                          Horse

Scott Jurek  7 wins                    Witezrif 6 wins
2005- 16:40                                1970- 11:49
2004- 15:36                                1971- 12:35
2003- 16:01                                1972- 12:42
2002- 16:19                                1973- 11:35
2001- 16:38                                1975- 12:04
2000- 17:15                                1976- 11:59
1999- 17:34  

As for the comparing the two events the only thing they have in common is the distance and  some of the trail. A lot of the trail is the same but not all of it. Frank says they have similar aide stations. Not even close to being true. The runner Has a fully stocked aide station were he is carted too every 5 miles. The horse routinely goes 17 to 20 miles without aide or water. Lets see the runners do that.
Now if you want to really compare races lets make both participants follow the same rules. Both need to carry weight on there back of about 20 to 25% of their body weight. They can't carry flash lights. ( oh I am sorry the poor human can’t see in the dark to bad). Thy both have to get water out of streams and ditches they fine along the trail. The runner can use the same number of aide stations the horses use. That would be the same as Gordie used on the first race he manage to finish just under 24 hrs not even close to the front though!!
Frank also likes saying how the horses break down over time. Well Frank why do you think we are the only ones in our age group at almost every run we do.

Do not forget that over-the-counter medications also have caffeine and must be considered in assessing how much caffeine consumed per day. The following are over-the-counter medications and their caffeine milligram quantities: 1. Anacin 32 mg. 2. Appetite-control pills 100 to 200 mg. 3.Dristan 16 mg. 4. Excedrin 65 mg. 5. Extra strength Excedrin   100 mg. 6.Midol 132 mg. 7.NoDoz 100 mg. 8. Triaminicin 30 mg. 9 Vanquish 33 mg 1.0 Vivarin 200 mg.
Three prescription medications are as follows: 1.Cafergot 100 mg .2.Fiorinal 40 mg. Darvon compound 32 mg. Now add up the amount of caffeine consumed in your beverages, over-the-counter medications and prescription medications on average per day. 250 mg a day of caffeine may interfere with deep sleep. Hopefully, you’re ingesting less than 250 mg a day of caffeine. If you are and still have deep sleep difficulties, consider having a professional evaluation. And, don’t forget that deep sleep disturbances are a symptom of insomnia. Your ability to sleep efficiency is related to deep sleep and mental and physical health. The source of the statistics was found in the Institute for Brain Potential.
A few more comments about employing a listening device while running or being on a treadmill. For me, if I am stuck and I do mean stuck on a treadmill (because of the weather) I welcome the distraction of TV, music or reading. I find that the environment and the machine seem to work hand-in-hand.
On the trail, I’ve listened to music and haven’t had any great difficulty with the environment. I especially liked rock music and really enjoyed being serenaded by Randall, Diane, and Secretariat while running the Way to Cool 50 km this year. I don’t know what it would be like to read something other than a novel (on the trail) which would consider great concentration. Perhaps having to really concentrate while running on a technical trail might prove to be hazardous to one’s health.
Certainly having a distraction while doing a tedious activity is not something new. According to Alberto Manguel  the author of “A History of Reading, “In the late Middle Ages women would get together to spin thread and ask the men to read to entertain them while they worked.”  On our runs, talking and listening to others-Secretariat, Chris, Farah, Madhu, Randall and others certainly makes running more fun. If you don’t have a human or animal to run with, consider getting an electronic device. Find your running buddy. Information found in the November 27, 2012 edition of the Wall Street Journal.
 The Dominicans have suggested a pretty good prescription for a whole life. Consider using it as a yardstick in evaluating your life. Keep moving to continue your wellness and remember to run for your life.